Create Custom Reports for Report Cards

Sometimes there is data that does not come from a Gradebook or Assessment, but would like to be populated onto the Report Card automatically such as State Assessment Data, Student Birthdate, Attendance, or Co-Teachers, etc. In order to have it auto-populate onto the report card, the data needs to be part of a Custom Report.

Process Overview

Custom Reports for Report Cards are a super helpful tool! It provides the ability of any unique data (other than gradebook/assessment values) to populate onto the Report Card. The following is an overview of the process:

  1. If the data is NOT in Illuminate (i.e., Study Island, Scholastic, Attendance (for DNA clients), create and import results into a Summary Assessment
  2. Enter data into the Summary Assessment
  3. Create a Custom Report within the Summary Assessment data
  4. Create a field with the type Custom Report, linked to the report and column of data to be populated onto the Report Card
  5. When ready, map and layout the new field onto the Report Card

If data is already in Illuminate (i.e., State Assessment scores, Reading Levels or other data in a Summary Assessment, Programs, Attendance (ISI Clients) etc.), skip directly to Step 2 - Create a Custom Report!

Most common use for custom reports on Elementary Report Cards are for attendance marks. For Elementary Reports, attendance is not a Common Field that we provide for you, but needs to be populated in a Custom Report. Second most common use is for Co-Teacher assignments to display on the report card automatically by way of a Summary Assessment, as opposed to a free text entry box for teachers to enter manually.

Step 1 - Getting the Data Ready

Do you currently house or have access to data in Illuminate?

No, data is NOT In Illuminate...Yet
Data is NOT In Illuminate...Yet

Only if data is NOT currently in Illuminate, would you need to create a Summary Assessment.

  • This type of assessment is more like a repository where you are storing and housing data
  • Data can be entered by users or you can import data from a file with data tied to student ID
  • Importing is a manual import and can replace current data or add additional records of information

To learn more about Summary Assessments, visit the Assessments: Summary and Demographic help manual.

Yes, data is already available in Illuminate!

If data is already housed in Illuminate, then you are ready for the next step. It will help to know the details and information on what data is expected to populate onto the Report Card such as state assessment name/type, year, and data field. Make sure you also have access to use the data for custom reports.

Step 2 - Create a Custom Report
Create a Custom Report

The data must be pulled together into a Custom Report. To get started, we recommend using Students > Search 2.0 which will provide you a currently enrolled student list to get started.

To learn more about how to use this tool, visit Create a Custom Report using Student Search 2.0.

We recommend titling the report Report Card XXX Custom Report or something to help you identify it is for Report Cards. This way you are least likely to modify it unless necessary.

Best Practice Tips: Keep it simple, less is more - remove columns of data that don't need with the exception of Student ID. Grouping where you merge multiple student records into one record or value will not come over to report cards. Translations are just a mirage, not a true value and will not display in a report card.

Attendance in Report Cards

In Elementary Report Cards attendance is not a Common Field, which means we do not provide the value for you.

Typically Elementary Report Cards need or have fields in support of: Days Tardy, Days Absent, Days Present, and/or Days Enrolled. You will need to create one Custom Report for each field and each grading period, staring with the first grading period to make sure the report works as expected.

I use ISI/DNA or ISI only.

As an ISI client, you are using Illuminate to store and take attendance. This means the data is available to create a Custom Report. You can continue creating your custom report and move to Step 3 when ready.

I use DNA only.

As a DNA or Data and Assessment client, you are using a different Student Information System to store and take attendance. Because attendance is stored outside of Illuminate, you have a few options available. All options should be heavily discussed with more than enough time prior to your first report card entry with your Implementation Manager.

Type of Entry Illuminate Recommendation More Information
Manual Entry This is the best recommendation and option, especially for your first year's report cards.
Most common during the entry process, teachers are provided attendance marks for their students for the grading period. This setup option does not require a Custom Report.

In the Elementary Report Card, a field type of numerical (such as 3) or decimal (if supporting data entry of half day marks such as 3.5) is created for each attendance field needed. On the entry screen, Teacher users enter the appropriate value as provided manually.

To learn how to create a Manual Entry Field, visit Step 8 - Create Report Card Fields.

Summary Assessment This is a great recommendation and option to try later in the year (or even Year 2), when other implementation and data goals have been successfully accomplished. That way you can give your attention to this process and use.
Export basic values of attendance for the grading period from your Student Information System and import the data into a Summary Assessment. Once the data has successfully imported, from the Summary Assessment create a Custom Report.
Considerations should include, providing yourself a window of time between the end of the grading period and when report cards are printed and sent home.

Why? If you would like the most current attendance marks available, you will want to wait until after the last day of the grading period. Give yourself time to export, import, and confirm the data is accurate before the values print, store, and report cards are sent home.
Attendance Nightly Imports This is not a recomendation practice for first year Implementations. Due to the volume of data collection, management, and implementation that happens in the first year, attention to such detail as attendance imports tends to not be successful.
This option is not a quick turn around or a fast process because it requires additional site setup components, successful imports, and data meetings to ensure import success. In addition, attendance imports do not include any absent reconciliation that may have occured, but the original attendance mark due to how the nightly import is structured conducted. Inquiry of this option should be heavily discussed with goals for year 2 or even year 3, or wait until you join the Illuminate ISI Family!

All available Data Specs and Courtesy Scripts are available via Illuminateed.com/Downloads for your review. Attendance data specs are considered Illuminate ISI or Illuminate's Student Information System.

But, as a DNA client, I do import Attendance!

If that is the case, and attendance does successfully import nightly, then you are able to create a Custom Report and move to Step 3 when ready.

Considerations should include that data is only as updated as the night before, and that is not including any absence reconciliation that may have been done. The data will be of the original marks.

Co-Teachers in Report Cards

A Common Field that we provide for you is Homeroom Teacher. This means if a teacher is marked as the primary teacher of a course or section, that teacher's name will print where that field is mapped or laid out on the report card.

Sometimes, Co-Teachers are assigned to a course or section. The logic in the field will not include the Co-Teacher's name, but you might want it on the report card.

I have Co-Teachers.

If you have Co-Teachers, then you have the following options available for you:

Type of Entry
Illuminate Recommendation
More Information
Manual Entry
This is the best recommendation and option, especially for your first year's report cards.
Most common during the entry process, primary teachers can quickly fill-down their Co-Teacher's name on the entry screen manually. This setup option doesnot require a Custom Report.

In the Elementary Report Card, a field type of text is created. On the entry screen, Pirmary Teacher users enter the appropriate value as provided manually, using features like Fill-Down for efficiency. The field is then mapped or laid out next to the homeroom teacher field.

To learn how to create a Manual Entry Field, visit Step 8 - Create Report Card Fields.

Summary Assessment
This is a great recommendation and option to try later in the year (or even Year 2), when other implementation and data goals have been successfully accomplished. That way you can give your attention to this process and use.
If the data is not stored as part fo your master schedule where Co-Teachers are assigned to courses and sections, then you can create a Summary Assessment like Co-Teachers 20XX-20XX. At this point, decide who will do the most work - the teachers or the builder:
  • If the teachers, have them enter the Co-Teacher's name for all of their students. This will remove an additonal step in the report card entry process AND make this information data stored in Illuminate, adding to the student's story.
  • If the builder, create and populate the data manually or by way of importing into the summary assessment.
Then, create a Custom Report.
Create a
Predefined Value
This is not an ideal option due to if revisions or editing that may need to be made, doing so can tamper with historical data. Success of such use is if staff turnover is low, or if the option to 'Overwritable by Teachers' is enabled.
Predfined Value Sets are lists or drop-downs for teacher's to choose from and select a value for a field, on the entry screen. You can create a list of Co-Teachers for that grading period and create a field type of Predefined Value. Upon the entry screen, teachers can still use features like Fill-Down to populate the desired data. This setup option does not require a Custom Report.

Considerations would include to make sure field options such as 'Overwritable by Teachers' are enabled so that if a Co-Teacher is missing, needs to be added, or other circumstances, they can easily add the Co-Teacher's name, which will NOT tamper with the Predefined Value Set. If a change to the list in required, it would be recommended to create value sets for each grading period with the most up to date Co-Teachers, if they have in fact changed. The benefit in using a value set is a consistant convention as desired to data collection and use in Custom Reports.
I do not have Co-Teachers.

Move on to Step 3!

Step 3 - Create a Field Group and Field

Now that your Custom Reports are ready, you can continue with creating Field Groups and Fields as appropriate.

Best Practice Tips: For areas like Attendance that is its own Field Group, with Fields for each attendance mark. You can also create a Field Group called Custom Reports, and each field is an area in the system. This workflow is totally your choice in support of your setup process as the builder.

Create a Custom Report

When creating a Field, you will choose the type Custom Report Value. From there, you will need to select the desired Custom Report and Column of data you wish to populate in this field. The selected custom report and column can change at any time up until entry begins. The Field Type however, cannot be changed.

We recommend to enable the option of "Overwrittable By Teachers" in cases where you may want the teacher to be given the ability to change the value due to data be incorrect and no time to troubleshoot. By default the custom report value will display on the enter screen as the defaulted value. If there is no value for the student on the custom report, then no value will appear in that field for that student.

Visit the Step 8 - Create Report Card Fields for more information.

Next Steps

Congrats! You are probably ready to move on to your Elementary Report Card building! Most likely, you are ready for Step 9 - Create Report Card Templates or Step 10 - Map and Layout the Report Card.